Scholarship in Action: The Power, Possibilities, and Pitfalls for Law Professor Blogs


A general debate concerning whether law blogs can be legal scholarship makes little more sense than a general debate concerning whether law articles or law books can be legal scholarship. Blogs—like articles and books—are just a medium of communication. Like other media, blogs surely can be used to advance a scholarly mission or a range of other missions.

Looking through the debate over law blogs as legal scholarship, I see a set of bigger and more important (and perhaps scarier) questions about legal scholarship and the activities of law professors. First, the blog-as-scholarship debate raises fundamental questions about what exactly legal scholarship is and why legal scholarship should be considered an essential part of a law professor’s vocation. And the key follow-up question is whether blogging should be part of that vocation. This paper sets out a few initial observations about the evolution and value of legal scholarship, and then share some thoughts on the power, possibilities, and pitfalls of law professors blogging to explain why blogging will become an accepted and valued part of a law professor’s vocation.


Law -- Study & teaching, Blogs, Law school faculty, Legal education, Legal literature, United States



Douglas A. Berman (Ohio State University College of Law)



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